Autumn is only just around the corner now, meaning that the temperatures are going to drop soon and we are likely to encounter some very blustery days. When it comes to taking your newborn baby outside in these conditions, it’s important that you dress them up right so that they are comfortable for the entire trip. Here’s some aspects to consider:
Don’t believe that the wind causes ear infections
Let’s first get a common myth out of the way — having a baby out in the wind will not result in them getting an ear infection.
This is because the location of an ear infection is found behind the ear drum and way back in the inner ear. Therefore, external exposure like wind or even water will not affect this area.
Instead, the risk factors to bear in mind is their age (ear infections are prominent in children aged between six months and two years old), family history, exposure to smoke and to a small effect, the use of a dummy.
Remember that if you’re cold, your baby will be colder
Now that we have that myth out of the way, it’s time to cover some facts. First of all, it’s totally fine to head outside with your baby right away if you’d like to. However, many paediatricians advise that you keep newborns away from crowded places due to germs being prevalent in such locations. It’s best to delay that trip to a shopping centre, supermarket or a restaurant with your baby by a few months then!
Furthermore, Ed Glasser, M.D., F.A.A.P., clinical associate professor of paediatrics at the University of Colorado School of Medicine in Denver, has pointed out to Fit Pregnancy And Baby: “Infants lose about 50 per cent of their heat from their heads.”
Add to this the fact that babies will cool down a lot quicker than adults, as well as the point that it is more difficult for them to generate heat once they have lost it, and the need to protect them when it’s cold outside becomes very important.
Some general rules of thumb to bear in mind is to dress your baby in one more layer than you’re going to be wearing when venturing outside, ensure they are wearing both thermal and waterproof layers to protect them from the weather elements, and checking that their fingers, toes, ears, nose and chin are all covered but that they can still breathe easily.
It’s best to only plan on being outside for short periods of time with your baby when it’s cold and windy, as well as heading inside as soon as your newborn looks uncomfortable and you’re unable to shield them from the blustery conditions.
The effects of windy weather on a baby’s skin
Cold and dry air can cause issues to your baby’s tender skin, as the conditions run the risk of sapping precious moisture and leaving their rosy cheeks feeling leathery and wind-burned.
Hands and feet are particularly prime target areas when there’s a chill in the air, so protect their fingers with a snug pair of mittens and ensure their feet are nice and snug by enhancing your buggy, pram or pushchair with some Cosytoes.
A couple of top tips to consider is to change your infant’s mittens or socks if they get wet, with a fresh pair to avoid skin becoming irritated and applying some baby moisturising cream as soon as you spot any of your baby’s skin which looks or feels dry.